Tucson fighting at Supreme Court for odd-year elections

By shuish | Arizona Capitol Times

Attorneys for Tucson are asking the Arizona Supreme Court to void a 2018 law that seeks to force the city to scrap its odd-year elections.

In new court filings, attorney Jean-Jacques Cabou said the measure approved by the Republican-controlled Legislature fails to recognize that Tucson voters adopted a charter as they are allowed to do under the Arizona Constitution. And that, he said, puts matters of “strictly local concern,” like how to run elections, out of reach of state lawmakers.

He also dismissed the claim of proponents of the legislation that the state has a legitimate interest in promoting increased voter turnout.

Hanging in the balance most immediately is whether Tucson’s scheduled 2021 election for City Council members in three of its wards takes place as scheduled.

But what the justices ultimately rule will determine how much latitude the state’s 19 charter cities have in deciding how – and when – to choose their leaders without legislative intervention. (Hobbs expects 2-3 days of ballot counting after Election Day.)

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